Christian Long

Rick Warren: A Life of Purpose

In TED Talks on May 20, 2010 at 10:33 pm

Reflection by VANCE L.

Original TED page w/ speaker bio, links, comments, etc:

Rick Warren:  A Life of Purpose

Rick Warren is not a man of my faith, of my religion, but is a man with whom I share some ideas. His book, The Purpose-Driven Life, is a world-seller that has raked in large amounts of money for him. He never expected that much. He considers himself a pastor not an author.

With the massive selling of his book, Warren’s own perspective was skewed. The first line in the book reads “It’s not about you.” With so much money and so much change in his own life, he could not help but think, “It’s not about me. So… What is it for?”, confused by his sudden influx of money.

Warren was debating on a talk show, and was asked about why he, a pastor, was concerned about the environment. He replied by asking whether or not “we have a stewardship over the planet.” The other man replied that “no, not any more than another species.” This addresses mindset. To Warren we have a stewardship over the planet upon which we reside. In his own words, “We aren’t ducks.” we’re a little bit smarter than that.

This relates to the money. He and his wife made five decisions about the money. The first thing they decided was that they wouldn’t use it on themselves. Second was that with that money he stopped accepting all pay from his church, and moreover, reimbursed them for the last 25 years of payment he recieved. To Warren giving away, no matter how small and how its done is how to break materialism. To him, materialism is what people consider to be the good life and yet that is where they are most confused and why they are missing happiness. Materialistic happiness, in his words, is all about “looking good, feeling good, and having the goods.” Warren cries that “No!” happiness is about “being good and doing good, giving your life away.” That’s the way God wired us.

Warren’s overall point, life is about service. That service is not necessarily being Mother Teresa or Jesus. The bottom line is, God finds pleasure in you being the best you can be with what you have been blest, using your talents to the best of your capability.

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